Monday, January 30, 2012

Old age is catching up to me. After almost 10 years, I'm finally getting back to seeing the doctor and having tests done to find out if my body is healthy or not. Some tests have already been done and I'll get results in a couple of days. Other tests are scheduled for later this week. I'll be honest with you, I hate doctors. I hate being poked and prodded and stuck and lectured. I hate sitting in a waiting room with a bunch of sick people coughing and sneezing and sniffling. I hate sitting in the little examination room all alone, staring at glass jars of cotton balls and Q-tips and gauze patches. If I had my druthers, I'd never go. But I suppose I lost my druthers when I got old.

It doesn't seem quite fair, does it? We live long, fruitful, healthy lives. We spend decades loving and caring and helping. We try to do the right thing. We want to be good people. And we are repaid in our old age by  saggy wrinkled skin, achy, arthritic bodies and illnesses for which there is no cure. Nor will we see a cure in our lifetimes, no doubt.

I have lived all of my adult life with an incurable disease. But Muscular Dystrophy has been more of an annoyance and irritation than anything else. I suppose I've been fortunate that it hasn't been any worse then it is. Although I've been in a wheelchair since I was 26, other than that I've been relatively healthy. Now, at 64, my body is aging at an accelerated rate. That tends to happen to the severely disabled among us. Do you know how they say that 60 is the new 50? In our case 60 is the new 70. I fully expect to get some bad news with my test results this week and next.

I'm not worried about it. I am a realist. I have always been philosophical about life and death. My ultimate demise may come sooner rather than later and, frankly, I'm okay with that. When I was 17, I was given a year to live. Of course, I've outlived all of those doctors and I'm still here at 64. Knowing that I filled my life with all the wonderful things I could do. I'm very proud of going to university in my 30s, of the businesses that I have run, the volunteer work that I've done, and my close ties to my family and friends. I have no regrets. I have no bucket list. Everything that I would have liked to have done, I have done. As I said, I'm a realist, so I never put surfing on my bucket list. Neither did I include climbing Mount Everest or running a marathon.

So if the news is not especially to my liking this week, I think I'll mostly be okay with it. Not that I am eager to shuffle off this mortal plane any time soon. I'd like to stick around and do more fun things, eat more chocolate, enjoy the company of those nearest and dearest to me. But I'm old. And my body is failing. It doesn't seem fair, does it? Work hard, be a good person, yet end your life all too often weak and in pain.

Kind of sucks.

2 comments:

David J. Bondelevitch said...

Good luck with your news. I had no idea you were as old as you claim, I thought you were a few years older than me. As you know I went through some health issues a few years ago, so if you need to talk, feel free to email or call me.

Lou said...

Thanks, David.